Posted April 02, 2009
2009 Outstanding Alumni
Dr. Jerry Fineg, '53
With a career spanning more than 50 years, Dr. Jerry Fineg has
distinguished himself as a world-class veterinarian and Aggie.
Throughout his illustrious career, he has served as a clinician and
researcher with the United States Air Force, NASA, and as an
educator at the College of Pharmacy at The University of Texas at
Dr. Fineg received his Bachelor of Science degree from Texas
A&M University in 1949 and graduated with his DVM degree in
1953. In 1964, he completed a M.S. degree in comparative physiology
from the University of Southern California. He began his twenty
year service to his country with the USAF as a base veterinarian in
Tripoli, Libya. His last military posting was as the Chief of the
Veterinary Sciences Division, School of Aerospace Medicine, Brooks
AFB, Texas. During his time with the USAF, he was a pioneer in the
space program through his care of the chimpanzees that were used to
assist NASA in their effort to verify the ability for humans to
survive and function in space.
After leaving the Air Force in 1973, Dr. Fineg steered his
career into veterinary medical education as a professor of
physiology and pharmacology at the College of Pharmacy at The
University of Texas. He was the director of the Animal Resources
Center and continued in that capacity until retirement in 2006.
Beginning in 1988, he has served as an adjunct professor in the
Department of Veterinary Public Health at Texas A&M University.
A noted authority in the field of laboratory animal medicine, Dr.
Fineg has authored or co-authored more than 40 peer-reviewed
In addition to his work as a clinician, educator, and
researcher, Dr. Fineg has been an active member and officer of
several local, state, national, and international organizations
serving the veterinary profession throughout his career. He has
served with distinction in the American Veterinary Medical
Association, the Texas Veterinary Medical Association, the Bexar
County VMA, the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science,
and the American Society for Laboratory Animal Practitioners.
In 1966, The USAF honored him with a USAF Commendation, in 1969
with a Joint Services Commendation, and in 1969 and 1979 with
Legion of Merit awards. At The University of Texas, he was awarded
the James T. Doluisio Centennial Fellowship from 1986 to 1989, and
he has held the James T. Doluisio Regents Professorship in Pharmacy
since 1986. Dr. Fineg was awarded the Texas Excellence Teaching
Award from the UT College of Pharmacy in 1996, and in 2001 was
recognized by the TVMA with the prestigious Distinguished
Achievement Award. The National American Association of
Laboratory Animal Science honored him with their Charles A. Griffin
Award in 2005, and in 2007 the Texas Society for Biomedical
Research presented him with the Distinguished Service Award in
recognition of his positive influence on biomedical research,
education and the humane use of animals in biomedical research.
Dr. Fineg met a young USAF nurse while serving in North Africa
and married her shortly thereafter. He and his wife Joan have been
married for 54 years and enjoy spending time with their four
children and three granddaughters. With a handicap of 24, he enjoys
an occasional round of golf, although finding time to play is
always a challenge.
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